If you’re a regular of Adelaide’s Eastern suburbs there’s a fair chance you’ve seen the sweet, vintage caravan parked at Kensington Gardens serving coffee and sweet treats.
Later Gator began popping up around Adelaide late last year and has since gained quite the following for its 100% plant-based menu that includes not only delicious coffee but more famously, its hand-made, gluten-free baked goodies.
The small caravan from which the goods are sold is a bespoke, completely custom-made vintage replica that has definitely served its purpose but the growing popularity of Later Gator and Chloe’s other labour of love, Chlo’s Vegan Club, has led to owner Chloe Mattner needing to upsize.
“I was initially looking for a space for Chlo’s because it was growing so fast so this new space will serve as the commercial kitchen for the bakery as well as selling all the things from Later Gator,” she says.
“Owning my own café has always been the ultimate dream, I just never thought it would happen so soon. I always thought I would use my degree and travel the world and open a café when I was 60 but here we are!”
Chlo’s Vegan Club is Chloe’s online vegan bakery that was the initial motivation for her to start her van venture.
After Covid-19 stripped Chloe’s dreams of a European getaway, she invested all of her savings into Later Gator which has ultimately changed the course of her life.
With plans of opening in August, The Gator Club will reside in a characteristic corner store Chloe will transform into her café and kitchen.
“I’ve been looking for about 4 or 5 months but the other were either too big and warehouse-like or too small but this one is a perfect size and exactly what I had pictured in my head when I was younger,” she says.
While the space may be bigger, the offerings from Chlo herself will remain fairly the same, at least for the time being.
“To start it will be all my baked goods, coffee and botanicals and then later down the track I’ll look at doing full meals and hiring a chef.”
There will however, be the addition of Chlo’s newest venture – her botanicals. Chloe is launching her own range of hot chocolate, matcha and turmeric that she will be selling in store.
“When I started a van I didn’t want to buy hot chocolate or matcha so I started making my own and quite a few people have asked to buy them so I decided to start selling them as well as my ready-made cookie dough.”
The Gator Club will also offer a retail space for Adelaide artisans to showcase their wares.
“Having the vans in markets for so long I’ve met so many amazing, talented artists and I want to give them a space to sell their crafts.” She says. “I want to create a community of people and give them a physical space to showcase their talents.”
The Gator Club will be located at 33 Payneham Road, College Park 5069 and is due to open in August.